Friday, July 12, 2013

50 States in 50 Days - 2013 Alaska High School Football

by Jeff Fisher
Follow @HSFBamerica

Alaska is always the first state to play games and the first to stop playing games and that's why our 50 States in 50 Days series is making an early stop up north.  For those of you around the nation that are reading this story, Alaska plays an eight game regular season schedule and hands-out football championships in three classificiations - Big, Medium and Small.

First Day of Practice - August 5th
First Week of Games - August 16th
Playoffs Begin - October 11th
Championship Weekends - Small Schools, October 19th and Medium & Big Schools, October 26th

Unlike the last two years when the first games of the season in America were played during the Fire and Ice Bowl in Hawaii, there won't be any match-ups between Alaska and Hawaii schools this season.

The 2013 season sees the number of varsity 11-man teams in the state increase by one as Voznesenka moves-up from 8-man football, joining the Greatland Conference.

In the Big Schools classification, South is the defending champ after beating Service last October.  Service has played in the last three Big Schools' championship, winning in 2011.

Look for Palmer, which had a perfect reglar season in 2012, to make some noise this year. Potential Player of the Year, running back James Nisbett is back for his senior season.

Five time state champ Soldotna will again be in the mix in 2013 thanks to plenty of returning talent, including sophmore running back Drew Gibbs, who rushed for over 150 yards and two TDs in last year's title game as a freshman.  You can check-out the Soldotna championship game highlights above.

North Pole, thanks to Rice-recuit Lance Wright, is expected to be in the mix in the Medium Division this year.  Wright was the top receiver in the state last year. The 6-3, 190-pounder was an all-state and all-Railbelt Conference selection in 2012 after 45 catches for 1,017 yards and 14 touchdowns.

Eielson is the Small School defending champ.

While Alaska doesn't keep track of all-time wins for its programs, earlier this year, MaxPreps took a look at the state's Top 15 dynasties since 2003.  Juneau-Douglas was ranked #1, followed by South, Soldotna, Service and West.  Since 2003, Juneau-Douglas has amassed an overall record of 72-30 with two state titles.

Click here to go to download the 2013 high school football schedule from the Alaska School Activities Association.

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